In my quest to bring freelance web designers the best stuff for getting clients, I decided to dig into my friend Ilise’s Proposal Bundle – 25 Resources for Project-Winning Proposals. Ilise Benun mentors creative-type businesses and has a lot handy marketing tools and services (really good stuff).
If you’re fumbling with handling the proposal process and aren’t getting enough proposals accepted (or aren’t earning enough on your web design proposals, then get her bundle and improve your selling process – it’s a great move.
The bundle includes:
- 9 Keys to Job-Winning Proposals
- 4 Bonus Tips on Getting Work from RFPs
- A webcast – Proposals that Get the Job
- 11 Sample Proposals (this is the winner)
Below are the main things I liked about this product.
It Teaches You the Process
You need to realize that proposing is a “process” not just a document you hand off upon request.
In addition to showing you how to get your proposals signed, she teaches you how to save you loads of hours wasted on proposals that don’t get accepted and prospects who just aren’t going to buy.
She talks about the overall strategy, how to follow, qualify prospects, handle common objects, and close the deal. She gives you the steps YOU can take –and as you’ll hear me say like a broken record YOU need to be in control of your marketing.
She Tells You What to Say
She gives excellent examples of things to say, when to say them and how to say them to keep your proposing process smooth and time-efficient. If you’re not smooth and step-by-step about it, it’s easy to lose contracts.
One specific piece of advice she gives is to handle your proposal in person or over the phone and don’t just email it to them. You want to be talking with them to handle questions, correct anything misunderstood, and ensure you have a proposal they need and want.
The attitude you must have to propose effectively comes through as you study the actual wording she recommends you use in the proposing process. I absolutely LOVE this kind of advice – it shows you want to say and you can feel how it puts you in power and how it helps you get the contract.
And to add to this, in my experience, when clients feel how you lead them through the process it communicates that you are diligent, in control, and care. These unspoken pieces of the process get you jobs.
How to Handle RFPs
RFPs are requests for proposals.
Basically the prospective client is looking to get a bunch of proposals for web design from a bunch of service providers like you.
The challenge with RFPs is that you often don’t get all the info you need to properly create a proposal, it’s also tough to connect with anyone personally (a key to selling as a freelancer), and the people providing the info aren’t very keen on what they are seeking a proposal for.
It can be messy.
Ilise describes RFPs as a “cattle call for creatives” and in some industries RPFs are a big part of how work is obtained. It’s not ideal if you’re pitted against a lot of other proposers (she suggest 4 or more often isn’t worthwhile). It can be worthwhile to handle them effectively.
Ilise gives good advice on how to handle this kind of situation to avoid wasting your time and to maximize your chances for getting the gig.
The Sample Proposals
The example web design proposals cover a range of creative services: logo design, website graphic design, web design, site building, redesign, and SEO.
You get example proposals for clients who are small businesses or bigger corporate or governmental clients as well.
For newer freelancing web designers, often with a very small operation, you’ll find the first few smaller proposal examples to be just what you need.
The bigger design proposals are definitely worth a onceover for ideas on how proposing is done and how to highlight your value in your proposal
Lastly, It’s a Nice Tight Bundle
It’s not overloaded with content. You can go through this bundle quickly, within a few hours and greatly improve your proposing process.
If you’ve got a decent proposal process in place, my advice would be to go through the material completely then pick one or two areas in your process that you can improve upon and implement that right away.
If you’re setting up or need to overhaul your proposing process then I would suggest you outline a simple process (a list of steps) based on this material.
What I Didn’t Like
It’s a pretty solid product, definitely worth more than the cost of $99.
Once you nail down the proposing process, you’ll reap benefits over and over again.
The proposing process is a huge piece of your business, one that should be done properly.
I wished the audio part was an MP3 not a video so that I could listen to it without staring at my computer. I already spend a lot of hours on my computer as it is. I do not need to watch a 1-hour video on it as well. Audio is enough.
Oh, side tip, the slides are good references, but no needed to absorb (for me at least) the main things to get out of it.
Learning to propose web design projects properly is a definite must-have in your arsenal to get clients and Ilise Benun’s Proposal Bundle would be a wise investment.
If you’ve got other great proposal resources, please share.
If you check out her bundle, I’d love to see your thoughts on it.
I’d love to hear your comments.